The fair allocation of municipal taxes was the subject of the consultation meeting held on the 21st of December, 2009 in the central Eurobank EFG (banking organisation) building in central Athens. Participants included stakeholders and representatives from all concerned parties, such as the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Justice, as well as representatives of collective producer responsibility sustainable waste management systems, NGOs and local and municipal governance bodies.
Some of the distinguished participants who greeted the event included a representative from Eurobank, Ms. Leda Modiano-Leon, a member of the parliament, Mr. Kanderes, the Vice Mare of the municipality of Athens, Mr. Demopoulos and a representative of the Secretary General of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Justice, Mr. Economou. The presentations, which followed, introduced participants to the subject of PAYT schemes. The first presentation was by Mr. Dimitris Homatidis, representative of Ecological Recycling Society,
who analysed the basic principles, on which PAYT schemes are based. During the second presentation, Dr. Karagiannidis, Assistant Professor in the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki
, analysed the economical characteristics and elements of PAYT schemes, while Ms Evagelia Makri, representative of Elefsina Municipality
, gave a detailed description of the practical aspects of the LIFE project and in particular of the pilot part of the project, which is taking place in the municipality of Elefsina. The presentations were followed by a round table consultation, during which subjects discussed included the pricing of waste management services, the different types of PAYT schemes, which have been applied elsewhere, the economical and environmental benefits from the application of such schemes for citizens and for municipalities, as well as the possible ways of dealing with ‘cheaters’.
This meeting gave the opportunity for a prolific dialogue to develop, concerning the application of PAYT schemes among stakeholders. For some participants this event was a good opportunity to become familiar with PAYT schemes and their function, while to others this was an opportunity for learning about how a PAYT scheme will be applied in Greece on a pilot scale and contribute to their success through participation in this and future consultations. During the following five consultation meetings, which will take place, administrative and economical issues will be subject to debate, as well as the prerequisites for the application of PAYT schemes and the ways in which higher participation levels can be achieved.